Top 5 things you didn't know about Hungary
In a country as radically different and unique as Hungary, there are certainly some surprises to be found. Here are 5 surprising facts about Hungary.
- There are more than a thousand thermal baths in the country. The earth's crust beneath the Carpathian basic where Hungary is located, is particularly thin, which is the main reason for its huge hydrothermal resources. Warm water bubbling up brings minerals from deep underground and the resulting thermal waters have great curative powers.
- Hungary is one of the oldest countries in Europe. It was founded in the year 897, before France, Germany or England became the states we recognize today.
- Through the middle ages it was one of the larger European states, covering many times the territory that it has today. It was later invaded and occupied by the Ottoman empire, before becoming part of the Austro-Hungarian empire, and eventually undergoing a radical split and downsizing under the treaty of Trianon after the first world war.
- The Hungarian language is known worldwide as one of the most difficult to learn. Although its written form uses the standard latin alphabet (though expanded to 40 letters, to allow for 14 vowels and several combined consonants) It has a complex system of cases and suffixes, not to mention the artistic idea of vowel harmony that alters the sound of suffixes to better suit the pronunciation of the word.
- Despite Hungary's small size, it has produced a large number of famous inventors, scientists, sports stars and celebrities. Hungarians have won every type of Nobel prize except the peace prize, and the Pulitzer prize for journalism and the arts was actually named after a Hungarian expatriate, joseh Pulitzer. More information on famous Hungarians.